Tag Archives: vermont creamery

Fresh Goat Cheese Gnudi with Vermont Creamery

April 5, 2019

Spring is always the time I find myself most excited for days in the kitchen, windows thrown open to the spring breezes and that divine fresh air carrying the scent of dark awakening earth. I delight in the sight of the first few spring delicacies arriving at the market and the kitchen counters quickly become heaped with good green things. After the long dark New England winter, I am powerless to resist the temptation of fresh peas, onions, ruby stalks of rhubarb, favas, nettles, the first grassy milk, vernal cheeses and eggs. I particularly love simple recipes that lend themselves to the abundance of the season and celebrate these delicate spring ingredients.

This recipe for creamy homemade gnudi celebrates some of my favorites – beautiful fresh goats cheese from Vermont Creamery, and their heavenly creme fraiche, the first eggs of the season from our hens and a buttery sauce with fresh bright peas and tender spring onions

Tuscan by birth (Gnudi is a form of the Italian word for naked), I first encountered these pillowy little dumplings Thames-side at the River Cafe on a blustery spring afternoon while living in London. Now, I can’t stop myself from ordering them whenever I see them on a menu – sadly,  it isn’t often enough! Traditionally made with ricotta, I was inspired to make them with with a bit of a twist using my favorite fresh goats cheese and the beautiful creme fraiche from Vermont Creamery. The result was an even lighter and more ethereal gnudi than I could have imagined.

The elegance of these gnudi, make them a perfect beginning to a spring meal. Luscious with a creamy mouthfeel and a texture akin to the most perfect coddled egg – these gnudi do require a bit of preparation and should be made at least a day in advance but ideally three days ahead. This little bit of preparation makes them an obvious choice for spring entertaining as they come together quickly on the day and allow you more time with guests. In this season of abundant natural beauty, I take every opportunity to find inspiration in the smallest details. When it comes to my table designs, I let the same things inspire me as I do in the kitchen. I look to the tones and textures of the season to create a visual continuity with the meal. I love to use eggs, herbs and other spring produce in my table decor. Not only is it a nod to what’s in store of guests, a simple beautifully laid table is a way to really add to the pleasure of the meal.

Serves 6 as an appetizer. 3 gnudi a piece

Ingredients:

  • 8oz Vermont Creamery goats cheese
  • ¼ cup Vermont Creamery creme fraiche
  • ½ cup fresh grated parmesan
  • 1 large Egg
  • 1 large Egg yolk
  • Good pinch of fresh grated nutmeg
  • Zest from half a lemon (plus more for serving)
  • 2 cups semolina flour

For the sauce:

  • 3 Tablespoons Vermont Creamery Unsalted Cultured Butter
  • 1 cup fresh shelled green peas
  • 2 small spring onion, very thinly sliced
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • Microgreens for garnish if desired

The gnudi need to be prepared at least one day in advance but preferably 3 days to let the gnudi rest before cooking. Take care when handling them in each step of the cooking process as they are delicate

On a large baking sheet spread a layer of semolina flour

In a large bowl, gently hand mill the goats cheese and then mix together (i also do this by hand) the goats cheese, creme fraiche, parmesan, nutmeg and lemon zest. If some small chunks of goats cheese remain, its ok. In another small bowl, lightly beat the egg and egg yolk together. Add it to the goats cheese mixture and stir until well combined. Using two spoons, shape mixture into football shaped balls about 2 inches or so long. You should have about 18 gnudi.

After shaping, place each onto the semolina lined baking tray. Once all of the mixture has been shaped, generously dust the gnudi with more semolina. Cover and place in the refrigerator at least one day or up to three

To cook, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Reduce to a vigorous simmer and carefully add the gnudi to the pot. Watch for them to float to the surface (3-4 minutes) and remove immediately. Gently transfer to serving dishes.

While waiting for the gnudi water to boil, melt the butter over medium low heat. When it begins to bubble add the thinly sliced spring onions and a pinch of salt. Saute until soft about 5 minutes. Then add the wine and peas and cook until peas are al dente (5-6 minutes) Add 1 ½ cups of the gnudi cooking water to the sauce and continue cooking a minute more.

Serve 3 gnudi per serving in shallow bowls with a small amount of the sauce ladle over top. Garnish with a sprinkle of lemon zest and micro greens if desired


Butternut Squash Mini Tartlettes

December 15, 2018

Ours is a house of perpetual motion, especially at the holidays, with a welcome stream of visitors coming through the door hopefully unannounced and preferably in parties of three or more. Often, they arrive with little packages tucked up under their arms or with a platter of just baked this or that to share as we pour cups of coffee or tea or wine depending on the time of day. There is an everyday magic that comes with these visitors and whether its known to them or not, their mere presence has transformative powers as it makes this old house feel full and warm and alive. The hum of chatter through the rooms, the clinking of glasses, the sounds of another log being placed on the fire all create such a rich holiday atmosphere. continue reading

A holiday meal : futsu squash soup, braised lentils with roasted root vegetables & crumb topping apple tart

November 20, 2017

I love Thanksgiving and I will readily admit that I love it for one sole reason. That reason is this, it is an excuse to break the rigidity of routine, to step outside the confines of our everydayness and shirk gleefully those habits we practice, mostly out of necessity and for the sake of efficiency, every other day of the year. It is an excuse to make those familiar routines take a back seat – if only for one day and only for one meal. At its core, Thanksgiving is the simplest of holidays – no strings attached, no pressure around gifts or the like. It is a day reserved simply to step outside the familiar and celebrate the everydayness of the everyday : one table, one meal and perhaps a few (or many) guests to share it with however and with whatever food feels the most appropriate in that moment. And the meal can be one as complex or elementary as one chooses and need not conform to any rules or practices (other than the fact that I do very much like to think about those things I am grateful for and thankful for and practice kindness – but ideally that is everyday not just one)  -so for the love and poetry of food and gatherings, we celebrate Thanksgiving. continue reading

Valentines Caramelized Goats Cheese Cheesecake Tartlets

February 13, 2017

I subscribe to love.

I subscribe to love with all its swiftness, fleet-of-foot, deep roots, finely feathered wings, quiet gentle tenderness, wild abandon, respectful, transcendent and humble persistence. I suppose I would say that what I really subscribe to is not love but more the spirit of love, its genuineness and possibility. When I stop to think about it,  I am gobsmacked at the very many ways love is able to manifest and delighted by the differences in the kinds of loves we encounter. So I think its a wonderful idea to pause for a moment and celebrate the loves, in all their vast and varied qualities in your life.

continue reading

Baked St. Alban’s Cheese with Candied Satsuma Peel

December 30, 2016

Before the night is out many a cheerful glass of champagne will be raised to toast the arrival of the new year and fondly send off the year just past.

I love this global celebration of time. This night dedicated to reflection and optimism. Stripping away the arbitrary pressure of resolutions, there seems something very special indeed about a night where a ripple of optimism makes its way around the globe. Behind the bubbles, the sparkles and tinsel is the brightness of positivism, the buoyancy of happiness. However, Its not just about the exhilaration of  looking to the year ahead, but also about finding the silver linings in the year we have just finished. In a world that constantly encourages us to reach ahead, to move forward with an ever fervered pace, I can’t help but relish the moments to glance back. To turn around to see, in plain view, the path the year has cut sprawling out behind me, twisting and winding to me to the exact spot I’m standing when the hands point to twelve. continue reading